Some boys were hanging out by the pond. Playing foolishly around the pond, the boys decided to skip stones on the pond. After getting bored with skipping stones, they saw some frogs by the pond. One of the boys said to the others let’s throw some stones at the frogs. All the boys started hitting the frogs with the stones. As they were playing around, frogs were getting hit and dying. One of the frogs poked his head up and said to the boys to please stop. The boys may be playing a silly game, but it was death for the frogs. The boys stopped throwing rocks at the frogs realizing their idea of fun was killing the innocent frogs. The boys left the pond upset realizing why they were joking and laughing, they were killing the frogs in their favorite pond. No longer would they be able to have fun and play with the frogs.
Lesson: We sometimes do not realize the hurt we can cause when joking around or playing when we should be busy doing more productive things. At the office, it is easy to make what feels like friends, but you may not really know him or her outside of the workplace. Therefore, we may joke and laugh at his or her expense, but while we are having fun, they may be in pain or upset from our jokes. This can be especially dangerous in the workplace. Practical jokes are not meant for the office and can lead to bothersome or to tragic ends. When others are trying to focus on their work, playing around can be dangerous to other people’s safety, such as accidents, lawsuits, or even a workplace-shooting down the line.
Instead of playing around and hurting others, it is important to remember how the other party may feel. Some people are more sensitive than others are and can take it much harder. Remind staff members about how others feel and may react to their words or actions. For safety purposes, it may even be a good idea to implement a “horseplay and joke” policy before things get out of hand.
This post is from a contributing writer to CEO Blog Nation.
Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net